Born in Portland, Oregon, Daniel O. Graham attended college at the United States Military Academy at West Point. He later attended the Army’s Command and General Staff College and the U.S. Army War College. During his 30 years in the military, Graham saw active duty in Germany, Korea, and Vietnam. Some key assignments included Estimator of Soviet and East European Affairs; the Office of the Chief of Staff of the Army; the Office of National Estimates of the Central Intelligence Agency, Chief of Current Intelligence and Estimates for the Military Assistance Command in Vietnam; and Director of Collections, and Director of Estimates of the Defense Intelligence Agency.

From 1973-1974, Graham served as Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, and from 1974-1976 as Director of its military counterpart, the Defense Intelligence Agency. During his military career, Graham received some of the highest decorations our nation bestows: the Distinguished Service Medal; the Distinguished Intelligence Medal; the Legion of Merit with two oak-leaf clusters; and in 1980 the National Armed Services Award presented by the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He served as military advisor to Ronald Reagan in both the 1976 and 1980 Presidential campaigns. In 1978, Graham became Co-Chairman of the Coalition for Peace through Strength.

In 1981, he founded and became Director of High Frontier. Lieutenant General Graham (Ret.) passed away on 31 December 1995 and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.


in the House of Representatives

Mr. ROHRABACHER. Mr. Speaker, Gen. Daniel Graham’s service to this country has been matched by few Americans. As a tribute to him and his achievements, I would like to submit for the Record, a letter that Speaker Newt Gingrich wrote to General Graham last year, and General Graham’s obituary as it appeared in the January 3, 1996, edition of the New York Times.

U.S. House of Representatives,
Washington, DC, May 10, 1995.

Dear Dan: I am sorry I am not able to join you this evening. However, I do not want my appreciation of your achievements to go unstated.

Your contributions to U.S. national security and the U.S. space program are exceptionally well known in Congress. As Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, your unflinching analysis of Soviet capabilities and intentions reminded us that the Soviet Union was an unfailing adversary that wished the United States immense harm. Your fortitude in telling elected officials the cold, hard truth, even when they sometimes did not want to hear it, served as a guidepost by which we could reorient U.S. foreign policy and win the Cold War.

Even in retirement, General Graham, you were dedicated and forward-thinking which you proved by founding High Frontier, a citizen’s organization dedicated to leading the United States towards a secure future in space. Your leadership helped President Reagan launch the Strategic Defense Initiative, which has brought us ever closer to ending the threat of nuclear annihilation. However, you were not satisfied to simply improve national security, but you led High Frontier and its sister organization, the Space Transportation Association, to creatively think about the U.S. future in space. Today, under you care and instruction, these two organizations are among the most creative sources of thinking on developing outer space as a national resource. The X-33 program to create a reusable rocket that dramatically lowers the cost of access to space, for example, would not be happening today without the contributions of you and your colleagues.

In closing, I can only say thank you for your past service in the Cold War and your wonderful contributions to America’s future. In formulating a vision for space development, you planted, watered, and nurtured a seed that is growing as we speak and will one day surpass our wildest imagination. Thank you Lieutenant General Daniel O. Graham for helping save America.

Your friend,
Newt Gingrich.

JANUARY 3, 1996

Lieutenant General Daniel O. Graham, one of the leading architects of President Ronald Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative, also known as `Star Wars,’ died on Sunday at his home in Arlington, Virginia. He was 70.

General Graham died of prostate cancer, Brigadier General Robert Richardson 3d, a friend and longtime colleague, said yesterday.

While others, including Dr. Edward Teller, played roles in getting the Reagan Administration to adopt the Star Wars plan to shield the United States from Soviet nuclear attack with space-based missiles, even General Graham’s opponents acknowledge that he was probably the most persistent advocate for the approach.

Dan Graham got it on the national agenda and, though it’s been modified recently, the ballistic missile defense concept has remained on the agenda ever since,’ said John Pike, director of the space policy project of the Federation of American Scientists, a research group in Washington.

The Strategic Defense Initiative changed its name to the Ballistic Missile Defense Project in 1993, Mr. Pike noted, but the project is still spending more than $3 billion a year on the kind of high-technology programs that General Graham championed.

A graduate of West Point, General Graham spent 30 years in the military, serving in Germany, Korea and Vietnam. Much of hiscareer was spent in military intelligence as a Soviet specialist, and he became an expert in missile defense systems and satellitesurveillance. He rose to become deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency for two years in the 1970’s, before hebecame the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency from 1974 to 1976, when he retired.

The general was known as an ardent hawk, even among his Pentagon peers, a man who strongly believed in the 1970’s that the rapid growth of the Soviet Union’s military was being ignored within the American intelligence community. And it was after General Graham retired from the military that he was able to press his views most effectively.

In 1976, General Graham advised Ronald Reagan in his first Presidential campaign, which was unsuccessful. In late 1979, the general was again asked to advise Mr. Reagan on military matters in his bid for the Presidency. Even then, General Graham was enthusiastic about shifting the nation’s military resources to an antimissile defense. But as the general recalled later, the invitation from Mr. Reagan prompted him to get `really busy’ on finding a way to pursue an antimissile defense policy.

In his research, General Graham came upon a plan developed in the Eisenhower Administration to destroy Russian missiles early in flight with Ballistic Missile Boost Intercepts, or Bambi, an early blueprint for space-based battle stations. The project was canceled after the Kennedy Administration concluded that it would be costly and unworkable.

Yet General Graham came to the view that technical strides in the intervening two decades gave the concept of space-based missile defense new life, according to `Teller’s War,’ a 1992 history of Star Wars by William J. Broad.

In 1981, General Graham set up High Frontier Inc., a policy organization intended to study and promote defense systems in space. In the last few years, High Frontier has focused more on space transportation and support systems instead of missiles, said General Richardson, deputy director of High Frontier in Arlington, Virginia.

Born on April 13, 1925, General Graham spent his childhood as the son of farmers near Medford, Oregon He came from a poor family, working in saw mills and orchards as a teen-ager, his son, Douglas, of Arlington, said yesterday.

General Graham is survived by his second wife, Adele Piro Graham, whom he married in 1994. His first wife, Ruth Maxwell Graham, died in 1989.

Besides his wife and son, General Graham is survived by six other children, Daniel Jr. of Fairfax, Va.; Melanie of Los Angeles; Laurie of Falls Church, Va.; Elizabeth of Falmouth, Va.; Julianne Stovall of Alexandria, and Margaret Cuccinello of Thomaston, Me.; two brothers, Patrick of San Diego and James of Colorado Springs, and one sister, Sharon Martinez of Pacifica, Calif.

“Clipper Graham” Makes Two Flights in Two Days

The DC-XA test vehicle made its second test flight on Friday, June 7 at White Sands, New Mexico, and turned around to make its third the next day after being renamed “Clipper Graham” for a late SSTO pioneer.

The second DC-XA flight rook place at 12:15pm EDT (4:15pm GMT) Friday, as the stubby, cone-shaped vehicle rose to a height of 485 meters (1,600 ft.) and then moved sideways 105 m (350 ft.) before landing safely.

On Saturday morning, the vehicle flew to a height of 3,120 m (10, 300 ft.) and stayed in the air for over two minutes before landing. Saturday’s launch had been scheduled for late Friday afternoon, as a test of the quick-turnaround capability the rocket offers, but threatening storm clouds on Friday delayed the launch until Saturday.

After Friday’s flight, NASA officials announced that the DC-XA had been renamed “Clipper Graham” in memory of Lieutenant General Daniel O. Graham. Graham had supported the development of single-stage to orbit (SSTO) spacecraft while serving in the Air Force. Graham passed away late last year. “Clipper” comes from the original name of the vehicle, the “Delta Clipper.”

“Graham was a visionary who championed the promise of fully reusable single-stage to orbit vehicles at a time when the majority of the space community were skeptics,” NASA administrator Dan Goldin said. “We’re doing this in commemoration of his vision in opening the space frontier.”

Friday’s and Saturday’s tests were the second and third in a series of five flights planned for this year. Clipper Graham is being used by NASA as a testbed for advanced technologies, such as lightweight ceramic fuel tanks, which may be used in projects like the X-33 and X-34.

Can one person really make a difference in this country of 250,000,000 people? The life of General Daniel O. Graham, who passed away on New Year’s Eve, gives a stunningly affirmative answer.

Dan Graham, whose first love was the cavalry, liked to quote an old proverb. For want of a nail, the shoe was lost; for want of the shoe, the horse was lost; for want of the horse, the battle was lost.

That proverb defines his place in history. For want of Dan Graham, Ronald Reagan would not have had the vision of a defense against ballistic missiles called the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI); for want of Reagan’s leadership, the United States would not have had a project called SDI; and for want of the SDI project and the threat of what it could do, the Cold War would have been lost.

It is now clear that we won the Cold War when Mikhail Gorbachev reluctantly concluded that he couldn’t talk Reagan out of SDI (at Geneva or elsewhere), and that the miserable Soviet economy couldn’t match U.S. expenditures for building a nuclear defense. When Reagan called on Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall, the media laughed; but SDI turned that “pie-in-the-sky” prediction into reality.

The Democratic-controlled Congresses never voted the funds to deploy SDI, but they did tolerate limited funding for research and development. Fortunately that (combined with the collapsing Soviet economy) turned out to be enough to checkmate Gorbachev.

General Graham had a much-decorated 30-year military career that included service in Germany, Korea and Vietnam and was capped by serving as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. In retirement, he rejected lucrative offers from defense contractors and dedicated his life to American national defense.

As Ronald Reagan’s military adviser in his 1976 and 1980 campaigns, Dan Graham laid out for his candidate the folly and culpable negligence of the Federal Government’s leaving America totally undefended against incoming nuclear missiles. Graham’s coaching led Ronald Reagan to articulate the crucial question on March 23, 1983: “Would it not be better to save lives than to avenge them?”

America’s national grand strategy, developed by Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara in the early 1960s, was still in 1983 totally based on killing Russians instead of on protecting the lives of Americans. This strategy, called Mutual Assured Destruction, was known by its appropriate acronym MAD.

This theory proclaimed the notion that the way to avoid nuclear war was (a) not to build any defensive weapons, but instead (b) to threaten the Soviets that, if they fired their nuclear missiles at us, we would retaliate with our offensive nukes and kill tens of millions of Russians. If this scenario ever took place, tens of millions of Americans would die because our government had done nothing at all to protect them.

MAD was a suicide pact — a strategy of revenge, rather than defense. Dan Graham said there must be a better way. The better way developed by Graham was originally called High Frontier (because space is the high frontier of America’s future), and was later called SDI. It is a plan for a layered defense, in which non-nuclear weapons shot from satellites in space and from ground bases in this country would destroy enemy nuclear missiles in flight before they incinerated Americans.

Dan Graham had the vision that a defense was both essential and doable, he was the salesman who persuaded Ronald Reagan and other public officials and opinion makers that it was sound political and military strategy, he assembled the scientists and engineers who proved it would work, he raised the funds to do all of the above, and he was a veritable machine grinding out refutations of the attacks launched on High Frontier/SDI by those determined to mislead the public with deceptive criticisms.

General Graham had to fend off the Ted Kennedy claque who tried to ridicule High Frontier as “Star Wars,” and the liberal Democrats who are viscerally opposed to spending any money on defense. Graham had to withstand opposition from Paul Nitze and the internationalists who opposed SDI because they sought nuclear disarmament through international agencies, and from the arms control lobby, which had a vested interest in continuing their jobs attending international meetings where they tilted about arcane nuclear weapons statistics.

President Clinton vetoed the defense authorization that would have funded SDI, claiming that it is “on a collision course with the ABM treaty.” That document is a relic of the Cold War, which continues to impose MAD on us and restricts our constitutional right to “provide for the common defense.” The nuclear threat today is from attacks by the several rogue nations that now possess ballistic missiles. The ABM treaty cannot protect us against them, but SDI can.

“Where there is no vision, the people perish.” General Daniel O. Graham had the vision for a “Defense that Defends.” As a fitting tribute to a great patriot, let us work to make it a reality.

WSJ OPINION: PRAISE FOR ISRAEL’S IRON DOME….. However Israel’s latest war with Hamas ends, the Gaza conflict will long be remembered for images of a military feat in the skies above Israel. Israeli interceptors have eviscerated the Iranian-supplied Hamas missiles heading for population centers. Chalk up an important strategic and technological win for missile defense. The Jewish state’s Iron Dome system […]

ROGER SIMON: BENGHAZI, GAZA AND THE KILLERS OF CNN? Has Benghazi helped Israel? It’s hard to calculate the amount, but it seems likely that the evolving Libyan scandal has been useful to Israel in its struggle with Hamas in Gaza. The embarrassing — even humiliating — mishandling and subsequent misnaming of the terror attack on the U.S. consulate/CIA installation has made the administration […]

MICHAEL WIDLANSKI: REFLECTIONS FROM THE FATHER OF THREE IDF RESERVISTS Soldiers wait to be called, and their parents die a little bit inside during this wait. Our three sons are infantrymen, reserve soldiers who expect to be called to active duty to finish the business of putting the Palestinian terrorists out of business. They are ready, literally, to answer the call. They left their […]


“Given these grim realities, now on full display in Gaza, “Land for Peace” is nothing but a recipe for the annihilation of Israel.”

The final casualty in the current Gaza war may be the endlessly repeated mantra: “Land for Peace.” For forty-five years, ever since its stunning victory in the Six-Day War, Israel has confronted insistent demands to return the conquered Sinai to Egypt, the Golan Heights to Syria, and relinquish its own Biblical homeland in Judea and Samaria for a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza.

The peace treaty between Israel and Egypt in 1979 marked the first step toward implementing that beguiling vision. Then, in 2005, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon withdrew the Israeli civilian and military presence from Gaza, the 25-mile long strip that runs along the Mediterranean coast between Egypt (which occupied it between 1949 and 1967) and Israel.

Eight thousand Israelis were removed from their homes, which — along with their synagogues — were dismantled or demolished. Only the innovative and productive greenhouses were left behind to benefit the local Arab residents, who immediately destroyed them. Two years later Hamas became the ruling authority in Gaza and the rest, we might say, is tragedy.

Recent events in Gaza demonstrate the folly of pursuing the mirage of “land for peace,” which Hamas has now effectively demolished. After a year in which 700 missiles terrorized civilians in nearby Negev communities, Israel finally had enough. With unprovoked rocket attacks increasing, it launched Operation “Pillar of Defense,” conducting a precision air strike that killed Ahmed Al-Jaabari, commander of the Hamas military, and targeted its underground launching sites. Those who had celebrated the American assassination of Osama bin-Laden could hardly complain.

Within days, more Hamas missiles and rockets — more than 1000 by Monday — had landed in and around Beersheva and Ashkelon and, for the first time, the environs of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Israel’s Iron Dome interceptions reduced civilian casualties, but Israeli lives remained threatened. It became evident that Hamas enjoyed an abundant supply network for sophisticated weapons and technology that originated in Iran and then made its way through Sudan and Egypt, across the Sinai and through tunnels to Gaza, where Hamas, guided by Iranian experts, prepared them for launching.



GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Efforts to end a week-old convulsion of Israeli-Palestinian violence drew in the world’s top diplomats on Tuesday, with President Barack Obama dispatching his secretary of state to the region on an emergency mission and the U.N. chief appealing from Cairo for an immediate cease-fire.

Israel and Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers have staked tough, hard-to-bridge positions, and the gaps keep alive the threat of an Israeli ground invasion. On Tuesday, grieving Gazans were burying militants and civilians killed in ongoing Israeli airstrikes, and barrages of rockets from Gaza sent terrified Israelis scurrying to take cover.

From Egypt, U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon said he came to the region because of the “alarming situation.”

“This must stop, immediate steps are needed to avoid further escalation, including a ground operation,” Ban said. “Both sides must hold fire immediately … Further escalation of the situation could put the entire region at risk.”

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is to depart for the Mideast on Tuesday from Cambodia, where she had accompanied Obama on a visit. Clinton is to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank and Egyptian leaders in Cairo, according to U.S. and Palestinian officials.

The U.S. considers Hamas, which has killed hundreds of Israelis in suicide and other attacks, to be a terror group and does not meet with its officials. The Obama administration blames Hamas for the latest eruption of violence and says Israel has the right to defend itself. At the same time, it has warned against a ground invasion, saying it could send casualties spiraling.

By Tuesday, civilians accounted for 54 of the 113 Palestinians killed since Israel began an air onslaught that has so far included nearly 1,500 strikes. Some 840 people have been wounded, including 225 children, Gaza health officials said.


The endless wars with Israel are not really about the Jewish State. Nor are the wars about the Arabs living in the territories that Israel lost in 1948 to Jordan and Egypt and recaptured from them in 1967. The rest of the Muslim world cares no more about them than Hitler cared about the Sudeten Germans or Japan really believed in the rights of Chinese and Koreans.
Israel is a sideline in a regional struggle by fractured populations, divided by ethnicity and religion, by language and natural resources, to unite into a single commonality. It is a natural target because its population consists of a people who are members of a different religious and ethnic group than the dominant religious and ethnic groups of the region.

Unlike the Persians and Turks, the Jews are not Muslims, not even Shiites, and unlike the Christian Arabs, the Jews are not even of the same ethnicity as the regional majority. Jews are neither Muslims nor Arabs and that makes them unique and alien in a region where every country is dominated by either an Arab or Muslim identity. Or both.

To the Arab Nationalist, the Persian and Turk is an alien, but the Christian Arab is a brother. To the Islamist, the Christian Arab is a Dhimmi or an infidel, but the Turk is a brother in faith. But to both, the Jew and the Jewish State are an alien presence in the region that must be removed for their own version of regional unity to flourish.

The Post-Colonial contest in the Middle East has been over how to unite the fractured ethnic minorities and the religious splits together into a single region. What do the tribal oil monarchies have in common with the former colonies ruled by military strongmen? What do any of them have in common with the Persians and the Turks?

Uniting behind something is difficult, as even the Islamists must admit. Islam split over issues of succession not too long after Mohammed’s death. But uniting against something is fairly easy. The Jews are the most alien of all the groups in the region. Unable to unite on love, the Middle East unites on hate and hating Israel gives everyone in the region a feeling of having something in common.

Israel is however only a sideline in the larger struggle between Islamists and Nationalists, Sunnis and Shiites, in a region struggling to define itself around the supremacy of a single defining identity, rather than a harmony between different identities.

The Truth About Gaza: I Was Wrong to Support Israel’s ‘Disengagement’ From the Strip in 2005…..Bret Stephens *****

Better late than never…..will the others now stand up and form a line to the Right?….rsk

Sometimes it behooves even a pundit to acknowledge his mistakes. In 2004 as editor of the Jerusalem Post, and in 2006 in this column, I made the case that Israel was smart to withdraw its soldiers and settlers from the Gaza Strip. I was wrong.

My error was to confuse a good argument with good policy; to suppose that mere self-justification is a form of strategic prudence. It isn’t. Israel is obviously within its rights to defend itself now against a swarm of rockets and mortars from Gaza. But if it had maintained a military presence in the Strip, it would not now be living under this massive barrage.

Universalism, Cynthia Ozick once noted, has become the particularism of the Jews. Increasingly, our most fundamental belief about ourselves is that we dare not care about ourselves any more than we can about others. Noble Jews have moved beyond difference.

This inability to distinguish ourselves from the mass of humanity, this inability to celebrate our own origins, our own People and our own homeland, I argue in my latest book, The Promise of Israel, is dysfunctional. Do we not care about our own children more than we care about other people’s children? And shouldn’t we? Are our own parents not our responsibility in a way that other people’s parents are not? The same is true of nations and ethnicities. The French care about the French more than they do about others. So do the Italians. So do the Spanish. It’s only this new, re-imagined Jew who is constantly seeking to transcend origins which actually make us who we are and enable us to leave our distinct fingerprints on the world.

That ­an utterly universalized Judaism is almost entirely divorced from the richness of Jewish heritage and the worldview of our classic texts is bad enough. But on weeks like this, with hundreds of thousands of Israelis sleeping in bomb shelters and many millions more unspeakably frightened, it’s become clear that this universalized Judaism has rendered not only platitudinous Jews, but something worse. It bequeaths us a new Jew utterly incapable of feeling loyalty. The need for balance is so pervasive that even an expression of gut-level love for Israelis more than for their enemies is impossible. Balance has now bequeathed betrayal.


Glenn’s special message for Israel

I want to tell you what it’s like to live in most of Israel right now.
A missile is fired by Hamas in Gaza…
A siren goes off.
You get 15 seconds to find shelter.
I want Americans to think about what that means.
If you lived in a place where missiles were fired at you…
Hundreds a day…
And you would get just 15 seconds to hide…
How would you live?
Stop what you’re doing. Run to a basement. A shelter.
And if you can’t make it inside…
Lie flat on the ground with your arms over your head.
That’s life in Israel right now.
None of us would be willing to accept this.
None of us would have to.
Every country has a right to defend itself against terror.
But they keep telling Israel… “don’t overreact!” “don’t fire back!” “be careful!” “don’t ramp things up!”
Let me get this straight…
If Mexico fired a missile into El Paso, you know what we would do?
If Japan fired a missile into Beijing, you know what China would do?
So why does Israel have to hold back?
Why does every country get to defend itself…
But not Israel?
Why could that be?
I think we know why.
A Jewish man was walking down the street in midtown Manhattan over the weekend.
He passed by a group of people protesting on the street.
They were holding up signs, criticizing Israel.
He was wearing a yarmulke.
So they called him a “dirty Jew.”
We’ve seen this move before.
We’ve seen the terror before.
We’ve seen the sirens…and the bombs… and the threats.
We’ve even seen the insults.
“Dirty Jew.”
Nothing original there.
So I think we know what’s really going on here.
It has nothing to do with embargoes… or borders… or anything else that CAN be solved.
It’s because Israel exists. And it’s a Jewish state.
Let’s be honest with ourselves.
There are some people who can’t get past that.
The world’s oldest hatred.
It’s alive in our time. And it’s not hiding.
It’s right there in Gaza.